Wilhelm und Else Heraeus Seminar #702: Otto Stern's Molecular Beam Research and its Impact on Science

Europe/Berlin
Frankfurt

Frankfurt

Dudley Herschbach, Peter Toennies, Horst Schmidt-Böcking, Bretislav Friedrich
Description

In 1919, at Frankfurt, Otto Stern (1888-1969) implemented the molecular beam -- or molecular ray -- technique, which he characterized as follows: "the most distinctive characteristic property of the molecular ray method is its simplicity and directness. It enables us to make measurements on isolated neutral atoms or molecules with macroscopic tools. For this reason it is especially valuable for testing and demonstrating directly fundamental assumptions of the theory." Of special significance was the Stern-Gerlach experiment, carried out at Frankfurt in 1920-1922, which introduced the key concept of sorting quantum states via space quantization of angular momentum. Among its descendants are the prototypes for nuclear magnetic resonance, optical pumping, the laser, and atomic clocks, as well as incisive discoveries such as the Lamb shift and the anomalous increment in the magnetic moment of the electron, which launched quantum electrodynamics. In the 1960s, the molecular beam technique made inroads into chemistry as well, by fulfilling the pipe dream of disentangling from gaseous chaos elementary chemical reactions as single binary collisions of chemically well-defined reagents. Chemical reaction dynamics that ensued has remained one of the chief preoccupations of chemical/molecular physics to date. In the 1990s, a renaissance had begun in atomic physics, nurtured by the development of techniques to cool and trap atoms. Based on a combination of molecular beams with laser cooling, these techniques enabled the realization of quantum degeneracy in atomic gases, launched condensed-matter physics with tunable interactions, as well as transformed metronomy.

The Otto Stern symposium will survey both the historical aspects as well as the state of the art of what emerged from Otto Stern’s molecular beam laboratory at Frankfurt. The Physics Department at Frankfurt has been recently recognised by the European Physical Society (EPS) as an “EPS Historic Site,” which will be inaugurated during the symposium.

The symposium is funded by grants from the Wilhelm and Else Heraeus Foundation https://www.we-heraeus-stiftung.de/english/, the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft https://www.dfg.de/, and Frontiers Media https://www.frontiersin.org/.

Organized by

Bretislav Friedrich &
Horst Schmidt-Böcking

Registration
Registration for the Otto Stern Fest
Participants
  • Achim Czasch
  • Ana Maria Rey
  • Andreas Bauch
  • Arnab Khan
  • Arne Schirrmacher
  • Axel Gruppe
  • Bretislav FRIEDRICH
  • Burkhard Fricke
  • Christian Janke
  • Christiane Koch
  • Claus Peter Schulz
  • Daniel Trabert
  • Dietmar Birke
  • Dimitrios Tsitsonis
  • Dorothée Weber-Bruls
  • Dudley Herschbach
  • Eva Lindroth
  • Florian Trinter
  • Gerard Meijer
  • Gernot Gruber
  • Giammarco Nalin
  • Gilbert Nathanson
  • Gregor Kastirke
  • Günter Werth
  • Hendrik Ulbricht
  • Henrik Stapelfeldt
  • Horst Schmidt-Böcking
  • Isabel Vela Pérez
  • Jan Kruse
  • Joachim Ullrich
  • John Stuart Briggs
  • Josef Georg HUBER
  • Jürgen Troe
  • Karin Reich
  • Karl-Ontjes Groeneveld
  • Klaas Bergmann
  • Klaus Blaum
  • Kurt Ernst Stiebing
  • Kurt Scharnberg
  • Lisa Schmoeger
  • Lothar Schmidt
  • Ludger Wöste
  • Maksim Kunitski
  • Mallikarjun Karra
  • Marjansadat Mirahmadi
  • Markus Arndt
  • Markus Schöffler
  • Marlan Scully
  • Martin Breimann
  • Martin Pitzer
  • Max Hofmann
  • Max Kircher
  • Maxim Efremov
  • Michael Deveaux
  • Michael Devereux
  • Michael Eckert
  • Michael Tarbutt
  • Miriam Weller
  • Mirjam Schulz
  • Oleg Kornilov
  • Olga Smirnova
  • Otmar Schöller
  • Ottmar Jagutzki
  • Paul Corkum
  • Peter E. Toschek
  • Philipp Rieser
  • Raghu Tomar
  • Rainer Blatt
  • Reinhard Mahnke
  • Reinhold Schuch
  • richard lenkiewicz
  • Roland Langfeld
  • Sabina Krasilovskaja
  • Samuel Schumacher
  • Sebastian Eckart
  • Siegbert Hagmann
  • Stefan Schippers
  • Stephan Fritzsche
  • Sven Grundmann
  • Thomas Pfeifer
  • Thomas Stöhlker
  • Till Jahnke
  • Tilman Sauer
  • Trageser Wolfgang
  • Udo Strohbusch
  • Vasily Tulsky
  • Volker Dangendorf
  • Wieland Schöllkopf
  • Wolfgang und Harriet Demtröder
  • Wolfgang Gruenbein
  • Wolfgang Schleich
  • Yaakov Fein
Horst Schmidt-Böcking, Bretislav Friedrich